VET Student Guide 2019

VET Student Guide

Study VET at CDU

As the largest Vocational Education and Training (VET) provider in the Northern Territory, we invite you to explore the range of courses we have on offer.

We provide accredited training in job-related and technical skills. Our courses offer relevant and practical training that will help you enter or progress within the workforce with confidence and equip you with the skills you need to respond to shifting demands of work.

CDU has over 22,000 students enrolled in VET, Higher Education and Research, spread across eight campuses and centres in the Northern Territory, as well as Melbourne and Sydney. As one of a handful of universities in the country that provides both Higher Education and VET courses, CDU believes that every learner should be offered alternative ways to access education and to acquire universal skills, qualities and understandings.

Who needs this guide?

This guide is for anyone who is interested in completing a VET qualification or unit at CDU. It provides you with the information you need to become a CDU student, from application to enrolment. It also has information about the support services available to you as a CDU student.

We look forward to receiving your application and hope you will take the opportunity to stay connected to CDU over the long-term.

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Legislation, regulations and standards applicable to CDU students

During your studies at CDU, various government legislations, regulations and standards may apply to your studies.

To study a VET course, the Northern Territory Education Act states you must be over 17 years of age at the time of enrolment unless:

1. You have completed year 10 of high school and have NT Department of Education (DoE) approval to undertake full-time work or an approved full-time training program. To find out more about approved education, training or employment, visit the Northern Territory Government's education and learning website.

2. You are enrolled as a school student. If you are enrolled as a school student, you may undertake VET training under the conditions relating to VET for secondary students.

For further information visit CDU's governance page.

Types of VET courses

At CDU we recognise that students have other commitments and that study and training need to fit around these. Our delivery of courses is flexible and varies according to demand, location and circumstances. There are full-time, part-time and online study options available depending on the course. The wide range of courses and study levels available also means that there are opportunities to progress all the way to university level within CDU. Visit our course catalogue to view the full range of courses offered.

Certificate 1

Courses cover base-level skills for entry into the workforce and/or further learning. They are usually offered in remote locations or through schools.

Certificate II

Courses are introductory level courses that provide basic knowledge and skills, and prepare students for entry-level work positions or apprenticeships in a variety of industries and/or further learning. A Certificate II demonstrates to a potential employer that you're actively interested in their industry.

Certificate III

Courses provide theoretical and practical knowledge and skills for a specific area of work and/or further learning. This level of qualification is ideal for those wanting an apprenticeship or traineeship.

Certificate IV

Courses provide theoretical and practical knowledge and skills for specialised and/or skilled work and/or further learning. Designed for supervisory and management positions, this level of course is ideal for those who want to advance their careers in the industry they already work in, or further develop skills and knowledge acquired through previous study. Successful achievement at this level may provide up to 40 credit points towards an undergraduate higher education award in the same field or discipline.


Diploma courses provide specialised knowledge and skills for skilled/paraprofessional work and/or further learning by developing broad and in-depth skills in professional, technical or creative fields. Skills taught include planning, development and management. Successful achievement at this level may provide up to 80 credit points towards an undergraduate higher education award in the same field or discipline.

Short courses

Short courses can be a group of units that lead to a particular skill or non-accredited course that focuses on a particular skill or licensing requirement.

Enrolling in diploma or higher level courses

If you are enrolling in a diploma or higher level course, you will have to meet the entry-level requirements for the course. For more information contact your industry team Customer Service Officer.

Apprenticeships and traineeships

Apprenticeships and traineeships are a great way to get a head start in a chosen career or to retrain for the career you have always wanted by providing a nationally recognised qualification and on-the-job experience. It combines time at work with training and can be completed full-time, part-time or while you are still at school. You must have an employer and you must lodge a contract of training with Australian Apprenticeships NT.

School-based apprenticeships

School-based apprenticeships (SBA) enable senior secondary school students to get a head start on their career by allowing them to commence training towards a VET qualification and earn a wage, while still working toward their NT Certificate of Education and Training (NTCET). SBAs are considered part-time apprenticeships.

The breakdown of shared training and education equates to three days a week at school and two days at work or VET training. To enquire about school-based apprenticeships talk to your school VET coordinator.

VET for secondary students (VSS)

CDU make available a variety of VET programs to school students from years 9, 10, 11 and 12.

Each year the VET programs that are made available to school students are determined in conjunction with the NT Department of Education (DoE). VET programs that are not included in the VSS offerings are generally not available for access by school students.

Special entry requirements must be met for students less than 15 years of age. CDU will not accept students who are younger than 13 years of age.

> Students must be enrolled at school in years 9, 10, 11 or 12 and be 15 years of age when enrolling in any CDU program.

> Consideration is made to allow some year 9 and 10 students who are as young as 13 years at the time of enrolment to access 'Skill Set' programs or full certificate programs that do not exceed level 1. However the following shall apply:

      • Underage students will have a letter of support provided by the school principal to attach to the CDU enrolment form.
      • Secondary schools will comply with the CDU Children on University Premises Policy, which requires the secondary school to provide an adult supervisor to accompany the underage student(s) (students younger than 15 years) for the duration of time spent on a CDU campus.

> All VSS students must complete a DoE compliant VSS Expression of Interest form. This form provides the parent/guardian and school student permission to participate in an adult training environment.

Unique Student Identifier (USI)

All students undertaking nationally recognised training need to have a Unique Student Identifier (USI). This Australian Government requirement was introduced in January 2015.

The USI creates a secure online record of your training and qualifications gained in Australia from all training providers, conveniently kept together in one location. Creating a USI only takes a few minutes and it is free. You need to create a USI only once and it will stay with you for life.

Your USI must be provided to CDU before you can receive a Statement of Attainment or qualification. For more information about USI visit the CDU USI website. Create your USI here.